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9/6/2015 G.R. No.

L-23475

TodayisSunday,September06,2015

RepublicofthePhilippines
SUPREMECOURT
Manila

ENBANC

G.R.No.L23475April30,1974

HERMINIOA.ASTORGA,inhiscapacityasViceMayorofManila,petitioner,
vs.
ANTONIOJ.VILLEGAS,inhiscapacityasMayorofManila,THEHON.,THEEXECUTIVESECRETARY,
ABELARDOSUBIDO,inhiscapacityasCommissionerofCivilService,EDUARDOQUINTOS,inhiscapacity
asChiefofPoliceofManila,MANUELCUDIAMAT,inhiscapacityasCityTreasurerofManila,CITYOF
MANILA,JOSESEMBRANO,FRANCISCOGATMAITAN,MARTINISIDRO,CESARLUCERO,PADERES
TINOCO,LEONARDOFUGOSO,FRANCISYUSECO,APOLONIOGENER,AMBROCIOLORENZO,JR.,
ALFONSOMENDOZA,JR.,SERGIOLOYOLA,GERINOTOLENTINO,MARIANOMAGSALIN,EDUARDO
QUINTOS,JR.,AVELINOVILLACORTA,PABLOOCAMPO,FELICISIMOCABIGAO,JOSEBRILLANTES,
JOSEVILLANUEVAandMARINAFRANCISCO,intheircapacitiesasmembersoftheMunicipalBoard,
respondents.

ArtemioV.PanganibanandRenitoV.SaguisagandCrispinD.BaizasandAssociatesforpetitioner.

ParedesPoblador,CruzandNazarenoandAntonioBarredoforrespondentMayorofManila.

RomeoL.KahayonforrespondentsCityTreasurerofManila,etc.,etal.

OfficeoftheSolicitorGeneralArturoA.Alafriz,AssistantSolicitorGeneralPacificoP.deCastro,SolicitorJorgeR.
CoquiaandSolicitorRicardoL.Pronove,Jr.forrespondentsTheExecutiveSecretaryandCommissionerofCivil
Service.

FortunatodeLeonandAntonioV.Raquizaasamicicuriae.

MAKALINTAL,C.J.:p

The present controversy revolves around the passage of House Bill No. 9266, which became Republic Act 4065,
"AnActDefiningthePowers,RightsandDutiesoftheViceMayoroftheCityofManila,FurtherAmendingforthe
PurposeSectionsTenandElevenofRepublicActNumberedFourHundredNine,asAmended,OtherwiseKnown
astheRevisedCharteroftheCityofManila."

Thefactsassetforthinthepleadingsappearundisputed:

OnMarch30,1964HouseBillNo.9266,abilloflocalapplication,wasfiledintheHouseofRepresentatives.Itwas
therepassedonthirdreadingwithoutamendmentsonApril21,1964.ForthwiththebillwassenttotheSenateforits
concurrence.ItwasreferredtotheSenateCommitteeonProvincesandMunicipalGovernmentsandCitiesheaded
by Senator Gerardo M. Roxas. The committee favorably recommended approval with a minor amendment,
suggested by Senator Roxas, that instead of the City Engineer it be the President Protempore of the Municipal
BoardwhoshouldsucceedtheViceMayorincaseofthelatter'sincapacitytoactasMayor.

When the bill was discussed on the floor of the Senate on second reading on May 20, 1964, substantial
amendmentstoSection11wereintroducedbySenatorArturoTolentino.Thoseamendmentswereapprovedintotobythe
Senate. The amendment recommended by Senator Roxas does not appear in the journal of the Senate proceedings as
havingbeenactedupon.

OnMay21,1964theSecretaryoftheSenatesentalettertotheHouseofRepresentativesthatHouseBillNo.9266
hadbeenpassedbytheSenateonMay20,1964"withamendments."Attachedtotheletterwasacertificationof
the amendment, which was the one recommended by Senator Roxas and not the Tolentino amendments which
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weretheonesactuallyapprovedbytheSenate.TheHouseofRepresentativesthereaftersignifieditsapprovalof
HouseBillNo.9266assentbacktoit,andcopiesthereofwerecausedtobeprinted.Theprintedcopieswerethen
certified and attested by the Secretary of the House of Representatives, the Speaker of the House of
Representatives, the Secretary of the Senate and the Senate President. On June 16, 1964 the Secretary of the
House transmitted four printed copies of the bill to the President of the Philippines, who affixed his signatures
theretobywayofapprovalonJune18,1964.ThebillthereuponbecameRepublicActNo.4065.

ThefurorovertheActwhichensuedasaresultofthepublicdenunciationmountedbyrespondentCityMayordrew
immediatereactionfromSenatorTolentino,whoonJuly5,1964issuedapressstatementthattheenrolledcopyof
House Bill No. 9266 signed into law by the President of the Philippines was a wrong version of the bill actually
passedbytheSenatebecauseitdidnotembodytheamendmentsintroducedbyhimandapprovedontheSenate
floor.AsaconsequencetheSenatePresident,throughtheSecretaryoftheSenate,addressedaletterdatedJuly
11,1964tothePresidentofthePhilippines,explainingthattheenrolledcopyofHouseBillNo.9266signedbythe
secretariesofbothHousesaswellasbythepresidingofficersthereofwasnotthebilldulyapprovedbyCongress
andthatheconsideredhissignatureontheenrolledbillasinvalidandofnoeffect.AsubsequentletterdatedJuly
21,1964madethefurtherclarificationthattheinvalidationbytheSenatePresidentofhissignaturemeantthatthe
billonwhichhissignatureappearedhadneverbeenapprovedbytheSenateandthereforethefactthatheandthe
SenateSecretaryhadsigneditdidnotmakethebillavalidenactment.

On July 31, 1964 the President of the Philippines sent a message to the presiding officers of both Houses of
CongressinformingthemthatinviewofthecircumstanceshewasofficiallywithdrawinghissignatureonHouseBill
No. 9266 (which had been returned to the Senate the previous July 3), adding that "it would be untenable and
againstpublicpolicytoconvertintolawwhatwasnotactuallyapprovedbythetwoHousesofCongress."

UpontheforegoingfactstheMayorofManila,AntonioVillegas,issuedcircularstothedepartmentheadsandchiefs
ofofficesofthecitygovernmentaswellastotheowners,operatorsand/ormanagersofbusinessestablishmentsin
ManilatodisregardtheprovisionsofRepublicAct4065.HelikewiseissuedanordertotheChiefofPolicetorecall
five members of the city police force who had been assigned to the ViceMayor presumably under authority of
RepublicAct4065.

ReactingtothesestepstakenbyMayorVillegas,thethenViceMayor,HerminioA.Astorga,filedapetitionwiththis
Court on September 7, 1964 for "Mandamus, Injunction and/or Prohibition with Preliminary Mandatory and
ProhibitoryInjunction"tocompelrespondentsMayorofManila,theExecutiveSecretary,theCommissionerofCivil
Service,theManilaChiefofPolice,theManilaCityTreasurerandthemembersofthemunicipalboardtocomply
withtheprovisionsofRepublicAct4065.

Respondents' position is that the socalled Republic Act 4065 never became law since it was not the bill actually
passed by the Senate, and that the entries in the journal of that body and not the enrolled bill itself should be
decisiveintheresolutionoftheissue.

On April 28, 1965, upon motion of respondent Mayor, who was then going abroad on an official trip, this Court
issuedarestrainingorder,withoutbond,"enjoiningthepetitionerViceMayorHerminioAstorgafromexercisingany
ofthepowersofanActingMayorpurportedlyconferredupontheViceMayorofManilaunderthesocalledRepublic
Act 4065 and not otherwise conferred upon said ViceMayor under any other law until further orders from this
Court."

The original petitioner, Herminio A. Astorga, has since been succeeded by others as ViceMayor of Manila.
AttorneysFortunatodeLeonandAntonioRaquiza,withpreviousleaveofthisCourt,appearedasamicicuriae,and
havefiledextensiveandhighlyenlighteningmemorandaontheissuesraisedbytheparties.

Lengthyarguments,supportedbycopiouscitationsofauthorities,principallydecisionsofUnitedStatesFederaland
StateCourts,havebeensubmittedonthequestionofwhetherthe"enrolledbill"doctrineorthe"journalentry"rule
shouldbeadheredtointhisjurisdiction.AsimilarquestioncameupbeforethisCourtandeliciteddifferingopinions
inthecaseofMabanag,etal.vs.LopezVito,etal.(March5,1947),78Phil.Reports1.Whilethemajorityofthe
Courtinthatcaseappliedthe"enrolledbill"doctrine,itcannotbetrulysaidthatthequestionhasbeenlaidtorest
andthatthedecisionthereinconstitutesabindingprecedent.

TheissueinthatcasewaswhetherornotaresolutionofbothHousesofCongressproposinganamendmenttothe
(1935)Constitutiontobeappendedasanordinancethereto(thesocalledparityrightsprovision)hadbeenpassed
by"avoteofthreefourthsofallthemembersoftheSenateandoftheHouseofRepresentatives"pursuanttoArticle
XVoftheConstitution.

Themainopinion,deliveredbyJusticePedroTuasonandconcurredinbyJusticesManuelV.Moran,GuillermoF.
PabloandJoseM.Hontiveros,heldthatthecaseinvolvedapoliticalquestionwhichwasnotwithintheprovinceof
thejudiciaryinviewoftheprincipleofseparationofpowersinourgovernment.The"enrolledbill"theorywasrelied
upon merely to bolster the ruling on the jurisdictional question, the reasoning being that "if a political question
conclusivelybindsthejudgesoutofrespecttothepoliticaldepartments,adulycertifiedlaworresolutionalsobinds
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thejudgesunderthe"enrolledbillrule"bornofthatrespect."

JusticeCesarBengzonwroteaseparateopinion,concurredinbyJusticeSabinoPadilla,holdingthattheCourthad
jurisdiction to resolve the question presented, and affirming categorically that "the enrolled copy of the resolution
andthelegislativejournalsareconclusiveuponus,"specificallyinviewofSection313ofAct190,asamendedby
ActNo.2210.ThisprovisionintheRulesofEvidenceintheoldCodeofCivilProcedureappearsindeedtobethe
onlystatutorybasisonwhichthe"enrolledbill"theoryrests.Itreads:

TheproceedingsofthePhilippineCommission,orofanylegislativebodythatmaybeprovidedforin
the Philippine Islands, or of Congress (may be proved) by the journals of those bodies or of either
housethereof,orbypublishedstatutesorresolutions,orbycopiescertifiedbytheclerkorsecretary,
printedbytheirorderprovided,thatinthecaseofactsofthePhilippineCommissionorthePhilippine
Legislature,whenthereisinexistenceacopysignedbythepresidingofficersandsecretariesofsaid
bodies,itshallbeconclusiveproofoftheprovisionsofsuchactsandofthedueenactmentthereof.

CongressdeviseditsownsystemofauthenticatingbillsdulyapprovedbybothHouses,namely,bythesignaturesof
theirrespectivepresidingofficersandsecretariesontheprintedcopyoftheapprovedbill.2Ithasbeenheldthatthis
procedureismerelyamodeofauthentication,3tosignifytotheChiefExecutivethatthebillbeingpresentedtohimhasbeen
duly approved by Congress and is ready for his approval or rejection.4 The function of an attestation is therefore not of
approval,becauseabillisconsideredapprovedafterithaspassedbothHouses.Evenwheresuchattestationisprovidedfor
intheConstitutionauthoritiesaredividedastowhetherornotthesignaturesaremandatorysuchthattheirabsencewould
renderthestatuteinvalid.5Theaffirmativeview,itispointedout,wouldbeineffectgivingthepresidingofficersthepowerof
veto, which in itself is a strong argument to the contrary6 There is less reason to make the attestation a requisite for the
validity of a bill where the Constitution does not even provide that the presiding officers should sign the bill before it is
submittedtothePresident.

InonecaseintheUnitedStates,wherethe(State)Constitutionrequiredthepresidingofficerstosignabillandthis
provisionwasdeemedmandatory,thedulyauthenticatedenrolledbillwasconsideredasconclusiveproofofitsdue
enactment.7Anothercasehowever,underthesamecircumstances,heldthattheenrolledbillwasnotconclusiveevidence.
8 But in the case of Field vs. Clark,9 the U.S. Supreme Court held that the signatures of the presiding officers on a bill,
althoughnotrequiredbytheConstitution,isconclusiveevidenceofitspassage.TheauthoritiesintheUnitedStatesarethus
notunanimousonthispoint.

TherationaleoftheenrolledbilltheoryissetforthinthesaidcaseofFieldvs.Clarkasfollows:

ThesigningbytheSpeakeroftheHouseofRepresentatives,and,bythePresidentoftheSenate,in
opensession,ofanenrolledbill,isanofficialattestationbythetwohousesofsuchbillasonethathas
passed Congress. It is a declaration by the two houses, through their presiding officers, to the
President,thatabill,thusattested,hasreceived,indueform,thesanctionofthelegislativebranchof
the government, and that it is delivered to him in obedience to the constitutional requirement that all
bills which pass Congress shall be presented to him. And when a bill, thus attested, receives his
approval,andisdepositedinthepublicarchives,itsauthenticationasabillthathaspassedCongress
shouldbedeemed complete andunimpeachable.Asthe President has noauthorityto approveabill
not passed by Congress, an enrolled Act in the custody of the Secretary of State, and having the
officialattestationsoftheSpeakeroftheHouseofRepresentatives,ofthePresidentoftheSenate,and
of the President of the United States, carries, on its face, a solemn assurance by the legislative and
executive departments of the government, charged, respectively, with the duty of enacting and
executing the laws, that it was passed by Congress. The respect due to coequal and independent
departments requires the judicial department to act upon that assurance, and to accept, as having
passed Congress, all bills authenticated in the manner stated leaving the courts to determine, when
thequestionproperlyarises,whethertheAct,soauthenticated,isinconformitywiththeConstitution.

It may be noted that the enrolled bill theory is based mainly on "the respect due to coequal and independent
departments,"whichrequiresthejudicialdepartment"toaccept,ashavingpassedCongress,allbillsauthenticated
inthemannerstated."Thusithasalsobeenstatedinothercasesthatiftheattestationisabsentandthesameis
notrequiredforthevalidityofastatute,thecourtsmayresorttothejournalsandotherrecordsofCongressforproof
ofitsdueenactment.Thiswasthelogicalconclusionreachedinanumberofdecisions,10althoughtheyaresilentas
towhetherthejournalsmaystillberesortedtoiftheattestationofthepresidingofficersispresent.

The(1935)Constitutionissilentastowhatshallconstituteproofofdueenactmentofabill.Itdoesnotrequirethe
presidingofficerstocertifytothesame.ButthesaidConstitutiondoescontainthefollowingprovisions:

Sec. 10 (4). "Each House shall keep a Journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the
same, excepting such parts as may in its judgment require secrecy and the yeas and nays on any
questionshall,attherequestofonefifthoftheMemberspresent,beenteredintheJournal."

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Sec. 21 (2). "No bill shall be passed by either House unless it shall have been printed and copies
thereofinitsfinalformfurnisheditsMembersatleastthreecalendardayspriortoitspassage,except
when the President shall have certified to the necessity of its immediate enactment. Upon the last
readingofabillnoamendmentthereofshallbeallowed,andthequestionuponitspassageshallbe
takenimmediatelythereafter,andtheyeasandnaysenteredontheJournal."

Petitioner's argument that the attestation of the presiding officers of Congress is conclusive proof of a bill's due
enactment,required,itissaid,bytherespectduetoacoequaldepartmentofthegovernment, 11isneutralizedin
this case by the fact that the Senate President declared his signature on the bill to be invalid and issued a subsequent
clarificationthattheinvalidationofhissignaturemeantthatthebillhehadsignedhadneverbeenapprovedbytheSenate.
Obviously this declaration should be accorded even greater respect than the attestation it invalidated, which it did for a
reasonthatisundisputedinfactandindisputableinlogic.

AsfarasCongressitselfisconcerned,thereisnothingsacrosanctinthecertificationmadebythepresidingofficers.
Itismerelyamodeofauthentication.ThelawmakingprocessinCongressendswhenthebillisapprovedbyboth
Houses, and the certification does not add to the validity of the bill or cure any defect already present upon its
passage. In other words it is the approval by Congress and not the signatures of the presiding officers that is
essential.Thusthe(1935)Constitutionsaysthat"[e]verybillpassedbytheCongressshall,beforeitbecomeslaw,
be presented to the President. 12 In Brown vs. Morris, supra, the Supreme Court of Missouri, interpreting a similar
provisionintheStateConstitution,saidthatthesame"makesitclearthattheindispensablestepisthefinalpassageandit
followsthatifabill,otherwisefullyenactedasalaw,isnotattestedbythepresidingofficer,oftheproofthatithas"passed
bothhouses"willsatisfytheconstitutionalrequirement."

PetitioneragreesthattheattestationinthebillisnotmandatorybutarguesthatthedisclaimerthereofbytheSenate
President,grantingittohavebeenvalidlymade,wouldonlymeanthattherewasnoattestationatall,butwouldnot
affectthevalidityofthestatute.Hence,itispointedout,RepublicActNo.4065wouldremainvalidandbinding.This
argumentbegstheissue.Itwouldlimitthecourt'sinquirytothepresenceorabsenceoftheattestationandtothe
effectofitsabsenceuponthevalidityofthestatute.Theinquiry,however,goesfarther.Absentsuchattestationasa
result of the disclaimer, and consequently there being no enrolled bill to speak of, what evidence is there to
determine whether or not the bill had been duly enacted? In such a case the entries in the journal should be
consulted.

ThejournaloftheproceedingsofeachHouseofCongressisnoordinaryrecord.TheConstitutionrequiresit.While
itistruethatthejournalisnotauthenticatedandissubjecttotherisksofmisprintingandothererrors,thepointis
irrelevantinthiscase.ThisCourtismerelyaskedtoinquirewhetherthetextofHouseBillNo.9266signedbythe
ChiefExecutivewasthesametextpassedbybothHousesofCongress.Underthespecificfactsandcircumstances
of this case, this Court can do this and resort to the Senate journal for the purpose. The journal discloses that
substantial and lengthy amendments were introduced on the floor and approved by the Senate but were not
incorporatedintheprintedtextsenttothePresidentandsignedbyhim.ThisCourtisnotaskedtoincorporatesuch
amendmentsintotheallegedlaw,whichadmittedlyisariskyundertaking, 13buttodeclarethatthebillwasnotduly
enactedandthereforedidnotbecomelaw.ThisWedo,asindeedboththePresidentoftheSenateandtheChiefExecutive
did,whentheywithdrewtheirsignaturestherein.Inthefaceofthemanifesterrorcommittedandsubsequentlyrectifiedbythe
PresidentoftheSenateandbytheChiefExecutive,forthisCourttoperpetuatethaterrorbydisregardingsuchrectification
and holding that the erroneous bill has become law would be to sacrifice truth to fiction and bring about mischievous
consequencesnotintendedbythelawmakingbody.

Inviewoftheforegoingconsiderations,thepetitionisdeniedandthesocalledRepublicActNo.4065entitled"AN
ACT DEFINING THE POWERS, RIGHTS AND DUTIES OF THE VICEMAYOR OF THE CITY OF MANILA,
FURTHER AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTIONS TEN AND ELEVEN OF REPUBLIC ACT NUMBERED
FOURHUNDREDNINE,ASAMENDED,OTHERWISEKNOWNASTHEREVISEDCHARTEROFTHECITYOF
MANILA"isdeclarednottohavebeendulyenactedandthereforedidnotbecomelaw.Thetemporaryrestraining
orderdatedApril28,1965isherebymadepermanent.Nopronouncementastocosts.

Castro,Teehankee,Antonio,Esguerra,Fernandez,MuozPalmaandAquino,JJ.,concur.

Zaldivar(Chairman),FernandoandBarredo,JJ.,tooknopart.

Makasiar,J.,isonleave.

Footnotes

1AmendingSection10ofR.A.No.409definingthepowersanddutiesoftheViceMayor.

2SeeRulesoftheHouseofRepresentatives,RulesII(d)andIV(j)andRulesoftheSenateSections
3(e)and6(h).

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3Brownvs.Morris,290SW2d160,164.

4Taylorvs.Wilson,22NW119,120.

5SeeAnnotationsin95ALR273.

6Brownvs.Morrissupra,atpp.164165.

7Hammondvs.Lynch,151NW81,88.

8Lynchvs.Hutchinson76NE370.

9143U.S.294,30336L.ed.294.

10Grayvs.Taylor,113P588,591,affirmedin227U.S.51,57,57L.ed.413,416Peltvs.Payne,30
SW426,427.

11Fieldvs.Clark,supraatp.303Mabanagvs.LopezVito,78Phil.1,13Moralesvs.Subido,L
29658,Feb.27,1969,27SCRA131,134.

12ArticleVI,Section20(1).The1973ConstitutionsimilarlyprovidesinArticleVIII,Section20(1)that"
(E)verybillpassedbytheNationalAssemblyshall,beforeitbecomesalaw,bepresentedtothePrime
Minister..."

13See,forexample,thedecisionsofthisCourtinCascoPhil.ChemicalCo.vs.Gimenez,L17931,
Feb.28,1963,7SCRA347andMoralesvs.Subido,supra.

TheLawphilProjectArellanoLawFoundation

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